Highway to Victory: 1/48th Revell PV-1 Ventura
Revell's release of this Lockheed PV-1 Ventura in 2011 was a nice addition of a type not often seen in 1/48th scale before. Even more welcome were the nice details of the moulding and good fit of parts. Topping off this feature list was a reasonable price tag making this another great kit from Revell.
Notable Kit Features:
Well done raised cockpit panels and details
Finely engraved panel lines
Leading-edge slots are nicely moulded into the wings
Movable upper turret
Open bomb bay with bomb payload
Decent engine detail
Wing tanks provided
Very good fit of parts
Developed from the Hudson bomber, the PV-1 Ventura was used by the RCAF in OTU (Operational Training Units) as well as coastal patrol. Flown in Canada during WWII, from both ocean shores as well as points in between, I picked up this kit as soon as I saw it to make sure I had one in the collection. Happily the kit came with RCAF markings from #149 Bomber Squadron as well as a couple of USN marking options.
This kit really didn't present much of a problem putting it together as the overall fit is good and the provided detail level is certainly acceptable.
The kit provides a two colour fin flash for the RCAF type however reference photos I had indicate this fin flash should be tri-colour
All control surfaces are moulded in the neutral position
Kit Additions / Modifications:
Corrected the fin flash to tri-colour
Weighted the main gear by sanding flat a portion of the tire
I aimed for a light-medium weathered paint scheme for this aircraft, done up in the Pacific scheme camouflage. Starting with the light gray undersides and then spraying the Intermediate Blue (FS 35164) for the upper surfaces. Both colours were given a faded look by lightening the tones of paint in the centre panels and darkening the tones along the panel lines and in any repair areas. The nose cone and de-icer boots were done in near black. Engine exhaust staining was added by brushing on dry Tempera paint. The end result depicted aircraft No. 2195 of #149 BR Squadron based out of Prince Rupert, British Columbia in 1943.
I am tempted to pick up another one of these kits to do an Atlantic Coastal Command scheme as Aviaeology Decals released an excellent series of markings for the 1/48th Lockheed PV-1 Ventura in Canada (Part 1 & Part 2).
The After-Build Report:
This was an excellent value for money kit release by Revell of a type that had not seen much attention previously. The relatively low parts count (for its size) coupled with the good parts fit make it a good choice for model makers of just about any skill level. Although designed to be built with the bomb bay open and gear down I have seen this kit built "in-flight" and the builders didn't seem to have any problem doing so. You could certainly add some detail of your own to improve this model and make it a real show piece, however built right out of the box works well too.
Completed build #175 - October 2014 using the 1/48th scale Revell #85-5531 kit.
Feel free to comment or ask any questions - Keep on building, gain experience, challenge yourself if you like, but try not to stress yourself out over the build - it is suppose to be an enjoyable hobby after all - Cheers